Tetley is reportedly to launch Chaya, a range of chai-style teas in the UK.
 
According to the report from Marketing Week, the new brand is to be positioned as a trendy coffee alternative for young working women. The coffee bar boom, combined with a lack of quality branded tea in such establishments, suggests a promising opening for Chaya if Tetley manages to sell it within one of the well-known coffee bars.
 
Tetley is the second biggest tea bag brand worldwide and market leader in the UK. Known primarily for its consumption in the home, Tetley's new range of teas denotes a shift towards new market areas through an attempt to penetrate the UK's lucrative high street coffee bars.
 
In another shift away from its traditional tea bag format, the Chaya range will be sold as a concentrate to be mixed with frothy milk for a sweet, creamy beverage. The largest coffee chain in the UK, Starbucks, already sells chai-style teas under the Tazo brand, which is likely to prove Chaya's greatest competitor. However, the growth of many other coffee chains, such as Costa Coffee and Caffe Nero leaves plenty of opportunity in the market.
 
The branded coffee bar segment in the UK has almost quadrupled in size in the last 5 years, with turnover in 2004 predicted to have exceeded the GBP1 billion mark. More consumers are drinking on-the-go as attitudes towards drinking in public become more flexible and society becomes increasingly mobile. Longer working and commuting hours mean that consumers spend more time out of the home, encouraging the growth of coffee bars. As the pace of life increases, and society becomes increasingly individualized, the role for self-indulgence and treating in consumers' everyday lives also becomes more important. Consumers are therefore more willing to spend money on premium coffees from branded establishments of reliable quality.
 
Although these convenience and indulgence factors also affect tea drinkers, the market for quality, branded tea chains remains untapped. It is perhaps inevitable therefore, that branded coffee chains should start to expand their tea selections. Tetley's Chaya tea seems certain of success if it can sell the new brand to one of the leading UK high street coffee bars.